London School of Economics survey reveals pilots feel fatigue ‘not taken seriously’ by airlines
A study of 7,200 pilots across Europe on safety culture, the largest ever conducted, has shown more than half of pilots lack confidence in the safety culture within their airline.
In reaction to the study, the British Airline Pilots’ Association says it is ‘not surprised’ by the findings and that fatigue remain top of their members’ concerns across all types of airlines.
BALPA is already working with the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) to improve fatigue reporting, particularly following the introduction of EASA flight time limitations in February this year, which can legally allow a pilot to be rostered for shifts of up to 20 hours.
The study also shows that less than 20% agreed their company cares about their wellbeing.
BALPA’s Head of Flight Safety, Dr Rob Hunter, said:
“It’s not surprising to BALPA that the LSE survey shows more than 50% of pilots feel fatigue is not being taken seriously by their company.
“Fatigue has been a growing issue among pilots and has only intensified since the introduction of EASA flight time limitations earlier this year. BALPA has been working with all airlines and carriers to improve their fatigue management.
“Our own survey in collaboration with the CAA previously highlighted similar issues, with pilots not having confidence in their companies’ attitudes towards fatigue or reporting of fatigue.
“Safety is the top priority for pilots, as is demonstrated in the LSE’s survey, with 93% agreeing their colleagues take safety seriously.
“We welcome further research into safety culture, an important area that is often ignored, and hope that this latest survey will shine some light on the issues faced by today’s pilots.”